CIA Landlord Insurance Honda rider Kyle Smith delivered a top ten finish in today’s hot and humid World Supersport race at Brno in the Czech Republic.
From his qualifying position on the fourth row of the grid Smith got a bad start but fought his way through the field to trade positions with Ant West for the majority of the 16-lap race finally crossing the line in eighth place.
Smith said: “Positive first race back I think we still have some work to do and hopefully we can soon be fighting for the top 5. We’ve kept improving throughout the weekend, we had a few problems with grip which in warm up took us in the wrong direction so for the race we didn’t want to risk going in the opposite direction and went back to where we were. Maybe we should have taken the risk but we have more races ahead of us so hopefully we can keep improving on the result.”
Fellow CIA Landlord Insurance Honda rider Andrew Irwin made a good start to the race but his bid for another points scoring finish was frustrated when the grip levels went down and he finished just outside the points in 17th place.
“It was a frustrating race. The first four laps I felt pretty good maybe 13th/ 14th then the front tyre went off a lot faster that we thought it would. I crashed this morning and I didn’t want to do the same thing with the worn tyre the same as this morning so I used my head as much as I could and the tyre progressively got worse. No points, it’s one of those things, you have to have a bad race every now and then and this is it. I’ve got to progress from here and come back in Misano as competitive as possible.”
CIA Landlord Insurance Honda Team Manager Simon Buckmaster said: “I think we can take confidence and a good feeling from today’s race. Kyle made a bad start but he battled for seventh with West just losing out a bit on the last lap but a good strong finish. We tried different settings this morning but the conditions were a bit cooler in warm up so it would have been a risk to run them in the race. Maybe it would have paid off but we wanted to get a good positive start to our reunion so I think it is a good result and we can look forward from here with confidence and enthusiasm. Congratulations to Kyle and his crew Stu and George, I think we can go to Misano in a good frame of mind.”
“Andrew slipped off in warm up this morning in cooler conditions so we went for the softer front tyre to give him confidence but the track temperature went up quite a lot during the race and the tyre started to wear. To look at it’s not too bad but after the crash this morning he didn’t want to make the same mistake. Andrew’s learning all the time it’s another completely different track unlike anything he is used to so he just dropped out of the points. He is going forward so I am sure in Misano he will go from strength to strength. He is learning tracks well, we have really good data from there and Misano has been a strong track for us and for Kyle in the past so we are looking forward to a good race. Our aim is to be fighting further towards the front and closer to the top ten with Andrew. Let’s see what we can do.”
1 J. Cluzel
2 S. Cortese +0.148
3 R. De Rosa +3.368
4 L. Mahias +6.735
5 R. Krummenacher +7.764
6 T. Gradinger +18.651
7 A. West +20.773
8 K. Smith CIA Landlord Insurance Honda +22.576
9 E. Lahti +30.575
10 L. Cresson +31.323
17 A. Irwin CIA Landlord Insurance Honda +46.924